Samuel Abraham Walker.

The Church of England mission in Sierra Leone: including an introductory ... online

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unwittingly entailed upon him, he had come to return him his warmest
thanks, and would do all in his power to make him enjoy those
blessings which had been, through Grod's mercy, conferred upon
himself. After depicting, with the utmost calmness and moderation,
the really cruel circumstances connected with his first capture— how
his young limbs (for he was then a boy) were fettered with chains,
which were tied not only round his neck and waist, but on his feet and
hands likewise ; and how, after that, he was violently torn away from
the last of his little sisters, whom he ardently loved — ^he declared, and
his declaration I believe to be quite true, that now his pity for that
man who had thus cruelly treated him was so great, and his desire for
his salvation so ardent, that sometimes, when occupied with these
thoughts, he could not sleep for whole nights ; but being unable to do
more, he felt constrained to make his requests known to God, by in-^
terceding for the man in prayer."

No wonder that Christian youths enjoying themselves the blessings
of pure religion, and remembering all the horrors of heathenism,,
from which they had been rescued, should meditate with deep regret
on the degraded and ruined condition of their parents and friends at
home ; especially when sufficient remnants of Satan's supremacy still
existed in the Colony, to remind them of what they had been, and
awaken their admiration of that Grace, which had made them what
they were. Such facts as the following, which Mr. Beal relates, were
eminently calculated to make them thankful, and keep their spirits
low:—

*' June 28. An appalling circumstance occurred to-day. A man
and his wife, formerly worshippers of the God of thunder, but the



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4G0 CHUECH MISSION IN SIBKftA LEONE.

wife lately a candidate of our Church at Charlotte, a few monthfl
removed to a part of Freetown, where this form of heathenism is most
licentiously carried on, and where, no douht, they anticipated foDow^
ing their hearts' desire without interruption, whidi they cannot do so
well in a village. During a severe storm of thunder and lightnings Ihe
electric fluid was permitted to strike their dwellings deriving them of
life, and consuming their house. As it happened in the nig^t, in aH
probability they were asleep at the time, and were made, I fear,
monuments of His wrath, who has said, * He that, being often re-
proved, hardeneth his nedc, shall suddenly be destroyed, and fhmt
without remedy. " '

Well might the Christian natives feel attached to the godly men*
who were instrumental in rescuing them from so deplorable a fiite, and
rejoice in every accession to the Miasioiiaiy staff. This was one of
those consolations in the midst of danger and discouragement, t^ a
considerable extent, with which the Lord favoured His righteous
servants. Many proofs of native attachment to the missionaries,
might be produced, perhaps the following from Mr. Seal's journal,
will suffice for the present :

** Dec. 4. — ^The monthly prayer-meeting being at Kent, we thought
it advisable to spend a few days there, being stUl unwell. While
there, we were much rejoiced to hear that a firesh band of missionaiy
labourers had arrived, to strengthen our hands. We left Kent yes*
terday, and reached home this morning. We were heartily welcomed
by our people, many of whom came to our house, and thus expressed
their pleasure at our return : — ' Massa stay long. Misses stay long, this
time,' &c. We were only absent seven days. All were ready to tell us
that 'plenty missionaries come.' One observed, 'Ah, white man he
no fear dead (death) like black : if he see danger so, he can't go ; but
white, this come he die ; t'other come again. Ah, true, white he love
we poor black too much. I hope God will spare them life I ' Another
said, when gathering a few pence for the Society, and one or two began
to make some demur, * What ! you go grudge two or three copper ?
Society send missionary here many year to we. Mr. Renner come, he
die ; Mr. Gkrber come, he die ; Mr. Davey come, he die ; Mr. Bates
come, he die ; and plenty more for we.' With a great deal of energy,
' What you can think about ! Bkck can do this fashion ? we can send
we child — ^he die : we can send t'oder one again ? No, neber ! ' "

As an additional proof of the estimation in which the efforts of the
Society were held, the sum of £S7 : 16 : 5. was this year remitted to
England from the Sierra Leone Church Missionary Association. Mr.
T* Peyton says in his Journal under date of August 1 4th, '' I went
out this morning to collect subscriptions for the Society ; and in fbur



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DEATH OF SEVERAL MISSIONARIES. 461

lionrs recAyed ^15 : 15 : 6. I was highly pleased with the rea4liness
o£ tlie most oppulent of the natives to support our lahoors by their
«x>iitri1)ution8.*' On the Ist of November he reported that he had
already collected £25 for the next year.

The " Prince Albert " steamer, one of the vessels included in the
Niger expedition* arrived at Sierra Leone on the 34th of June, and
the two others, the *' Wellington " and "Soudan** shortly afterward.
As we shall have occasion to advert to this event mt>re at large on a
foture occasion, we shall content ourselves with announcing it here.
^We are now called to the painful, yet in one sense, pleasing task
of inserting a few particulars connected with the last moments of those
laborers in the vineyard, whom the Lord called this year that He
might " give them their hire.'*

The first called was Mrs. Young, wife of Mr. W. Young, catechist
of Waterloo. On the 2nd of March, she was prematurely confined,
tund continued gradually to lose strength up to the 17th, when she
died. Her friends bore witness of her that she was endowed with
*'ihe ornament of a meek and quiet spirit,** and that the Society lost
in her one of its most useful servants, and the people a most kind
firiend.

The second summons was addressed to Mrs. Sehmid, wife of the
Sev. D. H. Schmid, who arrived with her husband in the Colony on
the 12th of January, 1841, and departed to her rest t>a the 7th of
July following. The circumstanoes of her death have been recorded
by the Rev. G. F. Sdilenker, from whose journal we shall make such
extracts as our limits will allow.

" July 4. — While our dear nster was suiering great pain, she ex-
claimed, ' O, dear Saviour I is it not yet enough? I can no longer bear
it.' At another time she said, ' It is a proof that God loves me ; but
we are frail creatures, and cannot bear much. May it please the Lord
to grant me but one quiet hour before my departure, that I may pass
into eternity with a composed mind ! * Shortly after, she observed to
me, ' Dear brother, when I die, my husband will be in a situation
similar to your own : you can then sympathise with him, and comfort
him. After a little while, she said, 'Thou,0 Lord, knowestwhat is
enong^ for me : thou wilt help me, whether living or dying : thou hast
already succoured me so many times.*

" July 5. — ^Toward the morning, Mrs. Schmid said, * I thought I
should not again see the Lord's Day below ; but the Lord sees fit that
I should suffer a little longer. Well, it is good : may He only enable
me to bear it patiently! Lito thy hands, O Father, I commit my
spirit ; for Thou hast redeemed me.* When I asked her, ' I suppose
you will not regret having come to Africa, though the Lord should
take yon hence so soon?' she replied: 'Oh no! my lot has been



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463 CHUKCH MISSION IN 8IBRRA LftONB.

that which I could most have destied : I am rerj thankfkl that the
Lord has led me here.'

''July 7. — ^Yesterday erening our dear sister's fever increased, and
she became partially delirions. About one o*clock in the mormng,
four hours before her death, she sang^ with a loud and melodious Toioe,
die first verse of a Gterman hymn, which, if translated into Engtisfa^
would be nearly as follows : —

To me to live is Chrigt,

To die is gain for me ;
My aiudoiift spirit longs

The Friend aboTe to see.

Ohdly tbe worid I leave ;

Toall^IbidfrreweU:
With Christ, in endless bliss.

Soon, soon, I hope to dwelL

" Shortly after we could pereeive that her dissolution was at hand.
She seemed to be qpiite insensible. About a quarter b^ore six in ^e
morning her happy spirit took its flight to those mansions of the
Blessed, where there is no more pain nor sorrow, but where everlasting
joy shall be upon their head. Her end could hardly be perceived : it
was only from the pulse that we ascertained she was no more. The
remaius of our departed sister were interred in Kissey, according to her
own wish, near those of my own late beloved partner, waiting for the
joyful resurrection unto eternal life."

Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds were among those laborers who arrived in
the Colony on the first of December. They had both suffered much from
illness during the voyage ; and, on the 18th, Mr. Reynolds, in looking
after goods which were being landed, exposed himself to the heat of
the sun for some hours, which brought on fever : he was at first at-
tended by Mr. Ilott, who had received a medical education, and after-
wards by Mr. Fergusson, the experienced colonial practitioner : the
sequel may be told in the words of Mr. J. Peyton.

" On Lord's Day, the 26th he became quite delirious, and continued
so all day. At night, death seemed to be fast approaching ; and three
persons sat up with him. On the following morning, about 8 o'clock,
he appeared to be sensible ; and, as I sat by his bed-side, I said to
him, *Mr. Reynolds, I believe you will soon die.' He replied, *I
think so too.' I asked him if he was happy in the prospect of death.
He answered, ' Happy, quite happy ! ' I inquired, * In whom do you
trust for the pardon of your sins, and acceptance with God ? ' He
said, in a low tone of voice, being so weak, ' In the Saviour, Jesus
Christ.' After this he was insensible tilt half-past 1 1 o'clock, when
he breathed his last. Mrs. Reynolds, in an adjoining room, was ex-
tremely ill ; but a few hours before her husband's death, she was most



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TIMMANBB MISSION. 463

anxious to see him once more in this world. MThen carried to his
room^ she spoke to him most affectionately^ desiring him to con-
fide in Christ ; and having embraced him many times, she took her
last fiurewell of him in this world. The scene was most affecting ; and
made an impression on my mind not easily to be erased. Mr. Bey*
nolds died on the 27th of December, at half-past eleven o'clock a.m. ;.
and was interred in the new burying-ground, Freetown.

This pious and affectionate couple were not long divided, Mr. Peyton
proceeds to say —

'* Mrs. Reynolds continued daily to get worse. Mr. Ilott remained
with her the whole time ; and Mr. Fergusson saw her three times Srday.
Her extreme fever produced miscarriage at two o'clock in the morning
of the 30th, when she began to sink very fast, and on the following morn-
ing at a quarter to three o'clock, she left this for a better world, where
there is no more sickness, and no more death. Both Mr. and Mrs.
Reynolds, during their illness, were submissive to the will of God.
Mrs. Reynolds's fortitude of mind, and resignation to the will of her
Heavenly Father, were most gratifying to all who saw her."

TIlfHANEE MISSION.

The Rev. C. F. Schlenker thus describes the Missionary field and
the position oecupied by the settlement : —

''Jan. 28, 1841. The united population of these towns is about
2500. There is what is called Old Port Lokkoh, Port Lokkoh pro-
perly so called, Bobatt, and Santugo ; but all these nearly join, and
may be considered as one town. We have a large field of labour open
before us.

''April 1. The ground measures about 600 feet by 400. Our
school-house is nearly in the centre of it ; and the three dwelling-
houses for Europeans are in a straight line on the top of the hill ; so
that there is a considerable space between each of them. The public
roads, which pass along our land on the right and on the left, meet,
a short distance behind our ground, in one road, which leads into the
interior, to the Foulah country, &c. From hence to Macbelih, by land,
is one day's journey."

We subjoin a summary of the labors, difficulties and progress of
this mission during the January 1841, from the pen of Mr. Denton,
Catechist :

" The question naturally arises. What are the results of your first
year's labours in the new Mission ? I confess that, to the casual ob-
server and the enthusiast, Httle will appear ; but to those who are ex-
perienced in the work of Missions, and to us who are engaged in it.



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464 CHURCH JflSSION IN SIERRA LEONE.

there ia abundant cause for thankfulness and enoounigement to per*
aerere.

" In December 1840» we cleared the bush which thickly ooroed the
little spot whereon now stand our Mission-school and dwelling-hoaaes.
Since that time, a very considerable knowledge has been obtained of the
language ; large portions of Scripture have been translated and rad ;
and suitable parts of the Litu^y of our Church have been prepared
for Divine worship, which has been kept r^;ulariy every Lord's daj.
The day-school now consists of twenty-six children, many of whom
have made good progress in reading and writing, and some of the giris
in sewing. In addition to this, the way of salvation has been pointed
out to many, frequent visits made and religious conversations held with
the people, the results of all which are not yet to be fully estimated.
However we have at least broken up new ground, beaten a track, col-
lected materials for the use of the work, and so far opened a channel
through which, ultimately, under the blessing of Grod, the waters of
life may flow to many thirsty souls in this benighted land.

" A second inquiry might be. What are the difficulties you have had
to encounter ? In reply to which, I think I may say they have been
just such as might have been anticipated. Those which have arisen
from the task of learning a new and barbarous language, have been by
no means small ; and others have resulted from the people not knowing,
or mistaking, our real motive ; but perhaps the greatest obstacle has
been, that total indifference to spiritual things, which man in his
natural state, everywhere evinces. The Lord's day has been proclaimed
by the sound of a bell passing their doors. The people have been in-
vited and entreated to attend : but after all, only few would assemble.
This has led us to assume new ground — ^to go out into the highways
and hedges, carrying the Gospel into their streets and houses, and, as
it were, compelling men to hear it. If these means can be carried
out, I doubt not that much good will result ; but here we feel our
weakness — our numbers being so small, and our labours so oflen in-
terrupted by sickness, that we can do but little in this way."

In February a new king or Ali Kali was elected to succeed the
sovereign from whom the Missionaries had received the grant of land
on which their settlement was erected, and who died the preceding
year. The new Ali Kali was crowned on the 13th of Februaiy, in the
presence of the Gk)vemor of Sierra Leone and his family, attended by
his staff and a military escort. The object of the Gk)vemor was to
form a treaty with the new sovereign and the surrounding chiefs.

** This treaty contains," writes Mr. Denton, " some articles of con-
siderable importance ; such as, preventing the exportation of slaves,
and allowing the residence of a British Consul, and the free ingress and
egress of Europeans, with liberty to practise and teach the Christian



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DEATH OF SIR JOHN JEREMIE. 465

religion. This, of course, is of peculiar interest to us ; and occurring
just as we are settling among them,*we cannot but regard it as a fayour-
able intimation from the Lord, that we are, in this undertaking, under
His guidance and protection, and may also confidentlj expect his bles-
sing. The Governor has shown us great respect, and appears to be
much interested in the work which we have undertaken."

The GrOTemor here referred to, Sir John Jeremie, died in April.
We cannot avoid introducing an incident connected with that distressing
event, related by Samuel Crowther, in his journal, from which we
shall quote it :

** April 24, 1841. This morning, his Excellency, Sir J John Jeremie,
was buried. As I was going to Freetown, I overtook three women,
communicants of Kissey, who were conversing about the proceedings
of his late Excellency, and the great losd which the Colony had sus-
tained by his death. After I had passed them a few yards, one of them
said» after a pause, ' We all cry so much for this Governor, because he
stopped us from paying three coppers [market-fees, which the Gk)vemor
reduced to a half-penny] : what do you think of Him who gave himself
up for us ? ' I felt the force of this remark. I doubt not, I said
within myself, if the servants of God now and then hear such things
from their communicants, they will thank God and take courage."



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CHAPTER XIV.



THE NIGER EXPEDITION.



The Niger Expedition is supposed to have originated in two concurrent
attempts to awaken British sympathy in behalf of the grossly injured
inhabitants of Africa, notwithstanding the multiplied exertions and
sacrifices on the part of the British Goyemment in their favor:* — ^these
were, the publication of Sir T. Fowell Buxton's volume on the Afiican
slave-ttade, early in the year 1839, to which, on a; subsequent republication
of that work in 1840, he added a second part, containing bis proposed
Remedy for the evils depicted ; and the formation of The Society
POR the Extinction of the Slave-trade, and for the Civiliza-
tion OF Africa, in June 1839.

Influenced, it would seem, to some extent by these appeals to national
philanthropy, the Government gave practical evidence of an interest in
the subject thus commended to public notice ; for on the 26th of
December 1839, Lord John Russell, then Colonial Secretary, addressed
a letter to the Lords of the Tireasury, in which, after referring to the
present state of the Foreign Slave-trade, the habitual evasion of treaties
by foreign powers, the notorious failure of every effort on the part of
Great Britain to suppress it, and to one at least of the causes to whieii
its continuance was to be ascribed, namely, the large pecuniary profits
reaped by every successful adventure, his lordship thus proceeds :

" Under such circumstances, to repress the Foreign Slave-trade by
a marine guard would scarcely be possible if the wholf British navy
could be employed for that purpose. It is an evil which can never be
adequately encountered by any system of mere prohibition and penalties.
Her Majesty's confidential advisers are therefore, compelled to admit
th^ conviction that it is indispensable to enter upon some new preven-
tive system.* * * * To this end, the Queen has directed her ministers fa?

* See -between 'p>p. 56 aiid<82, of the preoedmg yolaiae.



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LORD JOHN Russell's letter. 467

negociate conyentions or agreements with natiye Chiefs or Powers ; the
basis of which would be, first, the abandonment and absolute prohibi-
tion of the slave-trade ; and secondly, the admission for consumption
in this country, on favorable terms, of goods, the produce or
manufacture of the territories subject to them. Of those chiefs, the
most considerable rule over the countries adjacent to the Niger and its
great tributary streams. It is therefore proposed to dispatch an Ex-
pedition, which would ascend that river by steam-boats, as far as the
points at which it receives the confluence of some of the principal rivers
falling into it from the eastward. At these or any other stations
which may be found more favourable for the promotion of a legitimate
commerce, it is proposed to estabtish British factories ; in the hope
that the natives may be taught that there are methods of employing
the population, more profitable to those to whom they are subject, than
that of converting them into slaves, and seUing them to slave-traders.
** With a full perception of the difficulties which may attend this un-
dertaking, the ministers of the crown are yet convinced that it affords
the best, if not the only prospect of accomplishing the great object so
earnestly desired by the Queen, her Parliament, and the people.
Having instituted a careful inquiry as to the best and most economical
method of conducting the proposed Expedition, I find that it will be
necessary to build three iron steam-vessels for this service ; and that the
first cost of those vessels, including provisions and stores for six
months, will amount to ^35,000. It further appears, that the an-
nual charge of paying and victualling the officers and men, will be
^10,546 ; the salaries of the conductors of the Expedition, and of
their Chaplain and Surgeon, will probably amount to ^,000. In
addition to this expenditure, presents must be purchased for the
Chiefs ; and tents and mathematical instruments, with some other arti-
cles of a similar kind, will be indispensable for the use of the persons
who are to be engaged in this service, when at a distance from their
vessels."

It was recommended by Captain Sir Edward Parry in his report on
th]3 subject, appended to Lord John Russell's letter to the Treasury,
that the expedition should consist of three iron steamers, strongly
built and of light draught of water, fitted for river navigation. These
vessels were built at Liverpool; and launched in September, 1 840 ;
they then received respectively the names of Albert, in honour of Her
Majesty's royal consort, who had accepted the office of President of
the Society for the extinction of the Slade Trade, and the civilization of
Africa ; — ^Wilberforce, in honour of the illustrious philanthropist ;
and Soudan, (or more correctly Habib-es-Sudan) or '' Friend of the
blacks." The two former were alike in size and proportion, the last

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468 CHURCH MISSION IN SIERRA LEONE.

was somewhat snudler, being intended for detached serrice when re-
quired up smaller riTers, for conveyance of intelligence or inyalids^ and
especially for sounding a-head of the other vessels.^

To obviate the inconvenience of the want of a free eirculatioa of
air between decks in a tropical chmate, and as a remedy for the
miasma that usually prevails in alluvial soils on these coasts, a system
of ventilating tubes was fitted to the vessels under the superintendance
of Dr. D. B. Reid. With this was connected a chamber containing
woollen cloths, linen, &c. through which it was intended whenever the
presence of malaria was suspected, the air should pass previously to
being circulated below by the ventilating apparatus.

The command of the whole expedition was entrusted to Captain
Trotter of the Royal Navy, who had distinguished himself by his
exertions for suppressing the slave-trade on the coast of Aftica. The
commanding officers of the Wilberforce and Soudan — Captain Trotter
commanding the Albert — were Captain Wilham Allen, R. N. who
had accompained Lander in his last voyage and furnished a chart of
the Quorra River ; and Captain Bird Allen, R. N. who had long been
employed on a survey in the West Indies, and who was well acquainted
with the African character. The following table shows at one view the
officers of the respective ships as they ascended the Niger —



Albist.


WltBnWOBCB.


SOXTDAW.


Oaiptain H. Dundaa Trotter.


CtmnuifuL


WiUUm AUen.


Command. Bird Allen.*




UeuieMmty Jaa. N. Stnmge-t




„ D. H. Stenhouse *




H. C. Haraton.




Matter, O. B. Hanrey.*


Master,


Wm. PoTBter.


Master, John Belam:


Sufffeon, J.M'WilUam^M.D.


Swrgeon,


M.Pritchett,M.D.t


Surgwn, W. B. MaimhaU.*
Assis.8urg. R. CoUman.*


Aui».Sur9. Ja«, Woodhouae •


As, Surff.


J. R. H. Thomaon.


,, P.D.NightiQgale.«


>i


John Stirling.f


CUrk w, Charge. N. Waters.*


Purser, Wmiam Bowden.


Purser,


CyruB Wakeham.*


Mate, F. W. Sidney.


Mate, W. C. Willie.*


Mate,


H. C. Toby.




J. W. Pairholme.


„ 2nd.


W. H. Green.


W. H. Webb.


Second Mi. R. D. Saunders.


»>






aerk, W. R. Bush.






Mas.Astist.


W. H. Willmett:


Clerk,


J. H. R. Webb.


Clerk, W. Wingdon.*


Oerk'sAs. J. Monat.


»i


W. Simpson.



Online LibrarySamuel Abraham WalkerThe Church of England mission in Sierra Leone: including an introductory ... → online text (page 58 of 73)